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Accounting for Corporate Income Tax

In: Business and Management

Submitted By tamilclass
Words 34356
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What is a liability? The answer might seem rather obvious: an amount owed from one entity to another. If the liability bears interest, how is interest expense measured? The simple answer is that interest expense is equal to interest paid. However, life can get a lot more complicated:  Does a liability exist if there is no legal liability, but the company has announced a particular commitment or plan of action?  How is a liability measured if the obligation is for services, not a set amount of money?  How can a liability be measured if the amount of cash to be paid is uncertain?

 How should a liability be valued if the stated interest rate does not reflect the market interest rate?  How is interest expense measured if the stated interest rate does not reflect the market interest rate?  When is interest part of the cost of an asset instead of an expense?

Liability financing is an integral part, perhaps even a dominant part, of the capital structure of many companies. For example, Shaw Communications Inc. reported total assets of $8.9 billion in 2009. Of this amount, only $2.5 billion is financed through shareholders' equity, with the balance, $6.4 billion, provided by debt in various forms. A sizeable portion of the debt is unearned revenue and deposits ($0.8 billion, or 9% of total assets) and long-term debt is 35% of total assets. Interest expense is reported at $237 million, eating up a significant portion of the reported $956 million in operating earnings. Appropriate measurement of these amounts is critical. This chapter reviews common liabilities, including both financial and non-financial liabilities. Technical measurement issues are reviewed in the context of bond liabilities. Chapter 13 will discuss accounting for share equity. Then, in Chapter 14, coverage returns to debt arrangements, those that have some attributes of debt and some attributes of...

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